If you’ve been an OTR truck driver for a company and want to be home more nights or have a pickup truck that you want to put to work, then hot shot driving might be the right career path for you. However, be prepared for some serious costs and hard work. The best way to ensure you’re successful is to be reliable and pay attention to detail. Also, stay up to date with industry trends and adjust your business strategies as necessary.
The first step to becoming a non-CDL hotshot owner operator is to buy a truck and trailer. The truck must have a GVWR under 26,000 pounds in order to avoid CDL requirements. It’s important to choose your vehicle carefully, as the type of cargo you haul will determine what kind of trailer you need. You’ll also need to register your business, obtain a federal Employer Identification Number (EIN), and purchase insurance coverage.
Another drawback of being a non-CDL hotshot owner-operator is that you’ll be responsible for all maintenance and repairs on your truck. This may not bother some drivers, but it’s important to objectively assess whether or not you can afford the financial commitment before jumping in feet first.
Non-CDL hotshot trucks offer shippers a more efficient point-to-point shipping option. This is especially useful when urgent shipments need to be delivered in a short amount of time. However, be ready for a lot of work and strict deadlines.